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Retailers hit out at ‘unprofitable’ and ‘deceptive’ Black Friday

With just over a week to go until Black Friday 2016, UK retailers have argued the American shopping extravaganza is unprofitable and unsustainable.

The number of UK retailers that say the day of discounting puts pressure on their business without boosting profits has doubled over the last 12 months, rising sharply from almost a third in 2015 to two-thirds this year.

The research comes from supply chain firm LCP Consulting, which estimates 5 million parcels purchased on Black Friday will end up being returned, resulting in retailers processing an additional 50% of daily returns volume in the week following Black Friday.

Premium retailer Jigsaw, which chose to stay out of the Black Friday scrum last year, has labelled the event a “deception” and is sticking to its promise not to discount outside of end-of-season sales.

CEO Peter Ruis said: “Last year we received nothing but positive feedback on our manifesto from the industry and more importantly our customers, and this year we are holding firm to this strategy.

“Black Friday warps our perception of what’s valuable and important. Has that product being offered at 20% off been designed to offset the price decrease? Has the supplier had pressure put on them to take the hit? Was it always meant to be at that price anyway and been ‘price established’ higher?”

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